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Author Topic: digital cameras  (Read 2934 times)

hover tim

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digital cameras
« on: June 29, 2008, 06:46:25 pm »

looking to get a new digital camera nothing too fancy or expensive just something that will take good clear pics with a usb port for uploading but i am not up on cameras any suggestions?
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DickyD

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2008, 06:57:16 pm »

Not a lot of information there Tim.

Have a look on Amazon to get a rough idea of what you want to spend and what you want then ask again. O0
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Shipmate60

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2008, 06:59:05 pm »

My preference is Fujifilm cameras, easy to use and good picture quality, but I am certainly no photographer.

Bob
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Colin Bishop

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2008, 07:13:19 pm »

Don't mess around with direct wire uploading. It's much easier to take out the memory card and plug it into the card reader that most PCs have these days. If yours doesn't have one you can get a standalone USB multicard reader quite cheaply. Only upload the pictures from the card though. Don't try to edit them on the card via the PC or the camera may not recognise them afterwards.

As far as cameras are concerned, most of the compacts you see these days are pretty good. Look for something with between 5 to 8 megapixels and at least a 3x optical (not digital) zoom. You will see cameras with over 8 megapixels on sale but the quality of the pictures will be defined more by the quality and size of the lens in the camera and up to A4 size anything over 5 megapixels will be fine.

Also look at the batteries. Many cameras take AA size cells while others use Li Ion batteries. Digital cameras are quite power hungry so you will need to carry around a spare battery if you do any serious snapping such as on holiday. Spare Li Ions can be expensive but if you pick a camera that uses AA cells you can get a set of Hybrio batteries which can be recharged in a standard NiMH plugtop charger but will still retain their charge for long periods unlike standard NiMH cells.

Buying off the Web is probably safe enough but you can go into Jessops and almost certainly get web prices for the asking if you've done a bit of homework first It also means that if something goes wrong you can take the camera back to them.

Colin
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Peterm

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #4 on: June 29, 2008, 07:44:41 pm »

This subject has come up before.  I took note, went to the Fuji website and got a refurbished Fuji S5600 for 79.00, and its brilliant even for a point and shoot photographer like me.
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Mankster

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #5 on: June 29, 2008, 08:07:46 pm »

I would dream of buying a camera that took only AA cells, they run down far too quickly with modern cameras and flash. Mine has a rechargable LiIon battery that will take nearly 200 snaps and a spare battery that lasts just as long off ebay was only 6.99 delivered.

Bryan Young

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #6 on: June 29, 2008, 08:11:49 pm »

May I mention the downside of having both digital an optical zoom?
The majority of people you see taking pics with a digital camera seem to think that they have to watch the screen. At arms length. This is very wasteful of battery power for a start. Also holding a camera at arms length is not good for "firmness" (is this why newer models have anti-shake gizmos?). I have even seen people with SLRs using the screen. Stupid. Every camera has an optical viewfinder. Use it. But please turn off the "digital" bit on the menu. To my cost I have learned that going to full zoom on optical will trigger the digital zoom and you will finish up with an enlargement of the item you were trying to photograph. Rubbish in most cases.
I love SLRs. But I hated having to tote around a bag full of lenses, so I went for a "one shot" with a 35mm-150mm lens. (Semi-wide angle to semi telephoto). Biggest is not the best. Work out what you want from the camera and take it from there. BY.
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Colin Bishop

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #8 on: June 29, 2008, 08:34:24 pm »

Bryan, I think pretty much all cameras have a combination of Optical/Digital zoom - it seems to be a standard feature these days. But not all compact digital cameras have an optical viewfinder, many don't and those that do can be quite hard to use as the thing is usually so small, worse if you wear glasses. You are quite right about camera shake at high magnifications though.

However, just to prove the exception to the rule, the picture below was taken using a 5 megapixel compact on optical zoom on a small yacht bouncing up and down in the Solent. The picture was taken at arms length, single handed as the other was wrapped round the mast to stop me falling overboard. Not too bad in the circumstances if you'll foregive the slightly tilted horizon!

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Roger in France

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #9 on: June 29, 2008, 08:35:26 pm »

As I have said in the Forum before....do not do what I did which was go for the largest screen I could find. It is certainly great but is quite useless in bright sunlight. You do need a view finder as well, even with the added accessory of a hood over the LCD. (Here, here Colin).

Roger in France.
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Bunkerbarge

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #10 on: June 29, 2008, 09:02:49 pm »

I'm afraid that you are wrong on one point Bryan.  My wife has a point and press that does not have an optical viewfinder.

I have a point and press Olympus which is supposed to be waterproof, shockproof, temperature proof etc..etc..  The idea is that it is a pretty robust little thing and takes superb pictures.

I agree with Colin do not rely on USB connections, camera manufacturers proprietary software and all that performance.

Take your card out and download them into your preferred picture editing software.  I still use Paint Shop Pro, the last version before Corel bought it and made a complete mess of it.
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andygh

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #11 on: June 29, 2008, 09:51:50 pm »

Quote
I would dream of buying a camera that took only AA cells, they run down far too quickly with modern cameras and flash

Sorry I have to disagree, the 2 AA batteries in my Nikon seem to last forever, we Just had 2 weeks in Cyprus and I didn't have to change the batteries until the last couple of days, I checked revues to get an idea of battery life

Quote
I'm afraid that you are wrong on one point Bryan.  My wife has a point and press that does not have an optical viewfinder.

I have a point and press Olympus which is supposed to be waterproof, shockproof, temperature proof etc..etc..  The idea is that it is a pretty robust little thing and takes superb pictures.

I have to agree with that, I never have a problem with the screen on mine, maybe some cameras have better screens?
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banjo

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #12 on: June 29, 2008, 10:32:35 pm »

 :)

This is a good little item:-

Canon PowerShot S5 IS
Digital Compact Camera
With a 12x optical Image Stabilizer lens, Face Detection Technology and extensive movie options the PowerShot S5 IS excels in any situation. Enjoy versatile shooting with Speedlite flash compatibility.
Features

    * 12x optical zoom lens with IS
    * 8.0 Megapixels

This particular battery was carried by a small pink rabbit to the top of Everest, if I ever have a need for it then I'm sure it will work.


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Bryan Young

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #13 on: June 29, 2008, 10:38:01 pm »

Allthat lttle lot just goes to show that you have to trust your own judgement. A decision made by a committee is quite probably the worst one imaginable. BY.
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Martin [Admin]

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #14 on: June 29, 2008, 10:43:18 pm »


I now use a Fuji S700 / S5700 which has a large screen and optical view finders,
I use both depending on the situation.
The viewfinder is useful if you need reading glasses as it's set to infinity.
(A new trip I learned recently, when using the rear screen, hold the camera at
arms length and against the neck strap which help study the camera.)
The Fuji S700 uses 4 x AA batteries ( NiMi 2,000mAh ) but I only needed 1 set for
nearly 1, 500 photos this weekend!!!
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Stavros

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #15 on: June 29, 2008, 10:47:22 pm »

Exactly what i was going to say Martin you beat me to it.I have been using the Fuji 5000 series cameras since they came out and have only high praise for them.I like Martin take a lot of photos in a weekend and get on average 500 + from a set of 4 2200amphr batts. I will admit one thing though if you use std batts eg Duracel forgety it only about 25 a set


Stavros
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Peter Fitness

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #16 on: June 30, 2008, 06:00:52 am »

I have an Olympus Mju 780 compact, 7.1 mp and 5x optical zoom, while my wife has a Pentax Optio M40 compact, 8 mp and 3x optical zoom, and neither have optical view finders. Both cameras take excellent photos, and the high resolution means that close cropping does not mean poor quality results. I must say I prefer an optical view finder, but many, if not most, compact cameras available today do not have one, they usually have large screens, but these can be difficult to see in bright light.
I am very happy with our cameras, but acknowledge that digital SLRs are usually better than compacts. However, a SLR is very hard to get into the pockets of a pair of jeans  ;D
Peter.
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Reade Models

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #17 on: June 30, 2008, 06:36:11 am »


The earlier Pentax Optio's did have optical view finders and were brilliant.  I had one for years and finally passed it on to my dad when I evetually upgraded.  He bought new batteries for it and it is still in daily use.

The move towards huge screens on the back of some cameras left no room for the optical view finder and I think that this has been a retrograde move?  There have been previous threads on this Forum discussing clip-on shade screens etc.  Cameras without optical view finders can be almost impossible to use in bright sunlight.

I now have two Nikon's, a D70 SLR that became obsolete a by introducuction of a later model only a few weeks after I bought it, and a P5000 10 megapixel compact with a large screen and optical view finder that does everything a camera should do and more.

Incidentally, you HAVE to use the optical view finder on the D70 SLR - the screen will only display photographs that you've already taken.

Malc

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farrow

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #18 on: June 30, 2008, 09:18:42 pm »

I have always found cameras a personal thing, what suits one person does not another. My advice is work out how much you can afford, then go into a large reputable dealer and ask to try different cameras until you find one that you feel comfortable with. Remember to allow for a decent size memory card as well as the one supplied is usually very small, with model boats on ponds you will need a long optical lens to grab the boat in detail so get one with a large number of optical stops such as the Panasonic with 10 optical stops. The magazine What Camera will give you a relative honest breakdown of the cameras for sale, a 5 meg plus system will give a decent A4 size picture upwards.
Myself I have a digital SLR, but my wife often does better pics with her Olympus 7.1 Miu compact, as taking a good photo requires a good eye and being able to see and frame the pic, not how expensive or how many megs it has or make.
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Colin Bishop

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #19 on: June 30, 2008, 10:12:27 pm »

I have both a digital compact and a digital SLR with three zoom lenses. The compact is quite adequate for casual photography when you don't want to carry the SLR around but the SLR beats it hands down in versatility. Also, with a SLR the picture is taken as soon as you press the button. With most compacts there is a delay which can be very frustrating when you are taking moving subjects.
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Casper

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #20 on: July 01, 2008, 09:05:18 am »

I have both a digital compact and a digital SLR with three zoom lenses. The compact is quite adequate for casual photography when you don't want to carry the SLR around but the SLR beats it hands down in versatility. Also, with a SLR the picture is taken as soon as you press the button. With most compacts there is a delay which can be very frustrating when you are taking moving subjects.

Could not agree more Colin, Compacts for the everyday stuff. The DSLR with a 10 -20mm zoom is the nuts for most situations at the lake side and in general.

If your into photography HDR images are the norm with DSLR, virtually impossible with compacts... these really draw out detail of any model that a one shot cannot do.

M

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barryfoote

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #21 on: July 01, 2008, 10:58:13 am »

If your into photography HDR images are the norm with DSLR, virtually impossible with compacts... these really draw out detail of any model that a one shot cannot do.

Not quite true, I now use an Olympus SP-55OUZ and have no trouble with HDR images. It is a superb camera with an 18 times Optical zoom.
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farrow

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Re: digital cameras
« Reply #22 on: July 05, 2008, 09:20:55 pm »

I agree with Footski, I have a DSLR and a good quality compact camera and I often cannot tell the difference when they open on my computer using Adobe programme. If you do not use the camera alot and use it for casual use and grab shots a good compact or for model boats on a pond a good picbridge(fixed zoom lens on a SLR type body) camera is sufficient. The benefit is then instead of spending 1000+ on a DSLR and equipment that would be necessary, you would spend under 500, what model could you afford to build for 500 +.
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